Real Estate Terms in Mexico

These are the most common terms you will see in Mexico whenever you are renting or purchasing a house.

Amueblado- Furnished. Pro tip: if you ever see a listing that says “amueblado” do not assume it is fully furnished. Make sure you get a list of what is going to stay in the home when you begin to occupy it.

Aval- a type of cosigner in Mexico who can vouch for you to pay a debt. Usually, in rental transactions. This can be a person or a company.

Baño- Bathroom

Bodega- Storage room

Casa en Coto – You may see ads for houses that say “casa en coto.” These are houses in gated communities. Casa means house, and Coto is a gated community with private entries/exits.

Cocina integral- The type of kitchen that most people in the USA and Canada are used to. This kitchen usually has cabinets, a refrigerator, a stove, lighting, and any other electronic appliances. (Pro tip- most houses in Mexico do not have dishwashers).

Contrato de Arrendamiento – Rental Agreement/Lease

Corto plazo- Short Term

Cuarto- Bedroom/Room

Ejido– A social farmland or land given to a family or nucleus by the government. With the understanding that that family or community will farm or work that land. You should avoid buying Ejido land at all costs.

Escritura- Deed

Fideicomiso- a type of bank trust used primarily for foreigners who wish to buy property in Mexico’s restricted zone. The restricted zone is all land located within 100 kilometers (about 62 miles) of any Mexican border, and 50 kilometers (about 31miles) of any Mexican coastline.

Fraccionamiento- Subdivision. In Mexico, a subdivision is a type of locality officially defined by the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI)​, and the regulations for its construction depend on the urban development laws of each Mexican state. Some fraccionamientos can be gated communities, but not all.

Inmobiliaria- Rental agency or Brokerage

Largo plazo- Long Term

Mantenimiento- Maintencance/HOA dues. This usually covers common areas such as BBQs, Pools, Pool houses, Security guards, or green spaces in gated communities.

Mascotas- Pets

Pagares– A signed guarantee that you will pay a specific amount to your landlord before a certain date.

Poliza Juridica/Poliza de Arrendamiento- A type of insurance policy that helps protect the landlord in the case a tenant fails to pay their rent. This policy includes personalized legal advice and support for the landlord. The policy usually pays the owner for the rent, services, administration, and possible damages caused to the property in the event that the tenant fails to comply with any of these obligations.

Predial- Property Taxes

Pre-Venta- Pre-sale

Privada/ Colonia Privada- A private community that is usually secured by a gated entry/exit.

Propietario- Homeowner

Recamara- Bedroom

Semi Amueblado- Semi-furnished. You may also see “no esta amueblado” which means it is NOT furnished.

Terraza- Terrace

Terreno- Lot

Mariana Lange

Mariana Lima-Lange was born in Mexico and immigrated to the U.S. when she was a child. She spent every summer visiting family throughout Mexico and is very knowledgeable about Mexican culture, lifestyle, and traditions. She is fluent in both Spanish and English.

Reader Interactions


  1. Dave Carlson says

    Especially interested in Puerto Morelos

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